Saturday, January 9, 2010
I sincerely hope that none of the various U.S. intelligence agencies rely on Nightly News for any sensitive information. According to the State Department, the misspelling of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's name was one of the security lapses that allowed him to board the flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas day. Considering the frequency with which spelling errors appear on Nightly News, I can only imagine the mangled names they would provide to the CIA, the NSC and other agencies. Some of the names recently misspelled on Nightly News include Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chesley Sullenberger, Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Barack Obama (spelled as "Barak" on Amy Robach's 12/28/08 blog), Sen. Kay Hagan, Dr. Anne Schuchat and Helen Keller. Brian Williams himself (on his blog) has misspelled the names of Alison Krauss, Paul Volcker, Condoleezza Rice, Gen. David Petraeus and Gen. Stanley McChrystal. (These last two are particularly appalling considering Brian's self-appointed status as a military buff.) So let us all hope that Nightly News is not called upon to provide any information to the U.S. government. Our security agencies are in enough of a state of disarray as it is.